For more than two decades, BodyBoss was little more than a concept sketched in the “invention book” of Dennis Oltorik. Not until he showed the multipurpose, portable gym to his son Ross, a former Ohio State University pitcher and quarterback, did the thought gain traction.
The younger Oltorik saw potential in the resistance-based exercise equipment that could be used for various workouts, adjusted for different strengths and collapsed to the size of small luggage. He created a crowdfunding campaign that raised $560,000 and created a community of fans. Today, the company, being led by Ross, is still racking up sales and winning fans thanks to online sales and marketing platforms.
BodyBoss is the top-selling home gym on Amazon, which generates more than 50 percent of sales. The Ohio-based company’s team of seven analyzes keywords to get the most out of its Amazon ads, which resonate with buyers in Canada, Germany, Mexico, France, Spain, and the United Kingdom, as well as in the United States.
BodyBoss also advertises on Facebook, Instagram, and Google. “Digital ads are an inexpensive way to effectively reach customers,” Account Manager Daniel Wulker said.
Sales on BodyBoss’ Wix-based website are processed through the Shopify e-commerce platform. And the roster of digital tools used by the staff includes G Suite, Gmail, Google Analytics and UberConference.
Technology also plays a role in the research and development side of the business. The current BodyBoss gym is version 2.0, and the company is working on a new product that will enable owners of the equipment to track workouts live as a way to gamify exercise.
Privacy is important to the company because of plans to track user workouts. But Wulker said aggressive privacy regulations could hurt the company. So could other federal policy ideas aimed at big tech companies that support small businesses, which in turn help drive innovation.
“Without these tools, we may not exist,” Wulker said. “We’d have to go door to door for sales. It would completely change our business. Congress needs to pay attention to the good that has come from big tech.”